Many professionals believe that the only path to success is by going through the hard sciences. These people don’t bother dealing with people in the humanities and the arts because they see those fields as mere pastimes or hobbies, not professions.
Despite consuming various forms of art and media such as literature, films, TV shows, artworks, or music, there are still people who don’t give such institutions the value they deserve. And as cliché as usual movie tropes can be, there is still some truth because art imitates life.
One undying trope is a parent discouraging their kid from being in a band, pursuing the arts, or becoming a professional dancer because they don’t believe that there’s money in it. That alone should make you think about where the general life goal of a society is heading towards.
Why are such tropes still circulating in the media in the 21st century? Adults nowadays are becoming more vocal about pursuing their passions, unlike the older generations who believed that there is no future in activities that can make you happy.
There’s an old saying that goes, “if you do what you love, you’ll never work a day in your life.” But why are there still people who are against those who pursue the arts? Do people automatically assume that everyone dreams of climbing the corporate ladder or building a career in the hard sciences?
There’s No Money in the Arts and Humanities
All the money in the world can’t buy you happiness. What is the point of having a career that allows you to earn more than enough of what you need if it makes you unfulfilled with your life? You have to keep in mind that you’re working to make a living, and not the other way around.
Some people immediately think that those who choose to pursue the arts will become a “struggling artist” because their chosen career path won’t earn them a livable wage. While they are not completely wrong to think that, they are wrong in dictating what others can and can’t do just because of societal pressure.
Believing that there is no money in the arts and humanities is a sign of cowardice. It’s what people who didn’t have the opportunity to pursue their own passions say to those who dare to dream. Cowards plant seeds of doubt and fear of failure into passionate people until eventually, they succumb to the pressure.
Why You Shouldn’t Let That Stop You
Without the arts, the world will become an unlivable place. And without creative outlets to pursue passions, the people will implode from the lack of individuality. You see, passion and the arts are what makes people human. Or rather, humane.
When you stop pursuing your passions to chase after money, you begin exchanging your humanity for the sake of “success.” But that’s just the thing. You should be the one creating your definition of success and not other people.
If you believe that writing novels and self-publishing books can make you successful, then you should do it. And if you believe that making music and showing it to the world is what success means, you should pursue it.
The point is that you should do what makes you happy and fulfilled, no matter what other people say. Your markers of success shouldn’t be dictated by society’s standards but by what your goals in life are.
So Should You Choose Passion or Money?
The answer to this question is simple: it’s neither. Why should there be a divide between these two when you can choose them both? The path to having money by banking on what you are passionate about can have many bumps and turns, but it’s not impossible.
There are plenty of people in history who chose to pursue their passions and succeeded. Being successful doesn’t always mean you have lots of money, your name on billboards, or your contributions to society written in the history books.
Being successful can also mean having a happy family, conquering your fears, or being content with where you are in life. Success is not a one-size-fits-all situation that can be applied to everyone; rather, it’s a make your own adventure book with endless choices that you create as you go.
So don’t be afraid of failure when you begin pursuing your passion. If anything, it should inspire you to keep pursuing the art. You don’t have to spend your life trying to please everyone else because all you should be trying to please is yourself.